January 16, 2011

Jan 16 (Reuters) – Iraq’s Transport Ministry said on Sunday it would invite foreign firms in early March to submit bids to build 10 ships, including bulk cargo and container vessels, for an estimated value of $110 million.

Ismat Amer, head of the state-run sea transport company, said Iraq had started rebuilding its maritime fleet when it bought its first new ship in 2009.

Iraq signed a deal in September with Global Refinery of Switzerland to jointly operate 66 ships. The deal gave Iraq its first maritime fleet since the U.S.-led invasion that ousted Saddam Hussein in 2003.

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